Growing understanding of the issues that matter to credit unions and increasing the connections with elected leaders is vital to the advocacy success of any industry. Being engaged in this matter is what makes the difference in legislation – efforts seen at Hike the Hill meetings in Washington, D.C., in-district meetings with legislators, working with campaigns. But a big part of being effective in advocacy is having a broad understanding across the industry about the issues that impact credit unions, and what credit unions can do to shape them. On April 19th both the Augusta Area Chapter and the Coastal Empire Chapter held advocacy-focused meetings to create this broad perspective among credit unions on the top legislative issues for credit unions on the state level, and what the industry can to do help shape their future:
- Augusta Chapter hosted their area elected leaders, who included State Rep. Sheila Clark Nelson (D-Augusta) and State Rep. Brian Prince (D-Augusta). Credit unions were treated to an insider’s perspective of the state session from Rep. Prince, the guest speaker, who imparted the importance of credit unions being involved in the process and growing grassroots.
- Coastal Empire Chapter held an “overview of the state legislative session” where the group dug into the bills addressed in the state Legislature, with an overview of the top 10 wins for credit unions (and a rundown of the top 55 bills). Credit unions were provided the six tips to successfully advocating for issues, and what the industry does to help shape the bills that impact how you serve your members.
Earlier in the year the Chattahoochee Valley Chapter held a similarly advocacy-focused meeting in February, and the Augusta Chapter held a PAC-focused meeting in January to educate staff and board on the importance of being involved. Our thanks to all of these chapters for hosting advocacy-focused meetings; if your chapter is interested in pursuing an advocacy-focused meeting topic in 2018 please reach out to GCUA and we will be happy to help.